1. Joined
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    25 Mar '12 22:58
    Can anyone recommend a good unbiased resource, for getting a start on understanding them? When I was a kid I was taught that the former deified the Buddha or glorified him as a transcendent being and the latter, (called Hinayana) didn't. Apparently "Hinayana" is a derogatory term applied by the Mahayana side, meaning "lesser vehicle" although I was taught it was the better version, because it didn't deify the Buddha so much. So you can see how far I have to go.
  2. Standard memberRJHinds
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    26 Mar '12 05:03
    Originally posted by JS357
    Can anyone recommend a good unbiased resource, for getting a start on understanding them? When I was a kid I was taught that the former deified the Buddha or glorified him as a transcendent being and the latter, (called Hinayana) didn't. Apparently "Hinayana" is a derogatory term applied by the Mahayana side, meaning "lesser vehicle" although I was taught it w ...[text shortened]... version, because it didn't deify the Buddha so much. So you can see how far I have to go.
    You are just wasting your time with this Buddha stuff. Worship God and Him only. 😏
    HalleluYah !!!
  3. Joined
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    26 Mar '12 08:20
    Originally posted by RJHinds
    You are just wasting your time with this Buddha stuff. Worship God and Him only. 😏
    HalleluYah !!!
    This thread is not about YOU.
  4. Wat?
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    26 Mar '12 11:29
    Originally posted by JS357
    Can anyone recommend a good unbiased resource, for getting a start on understanding them? When I was a kid I was taught that the former deified the Buddha or glorified him as a transcendent being and the latter, (called Hinayana) didn't. Apparently "Hinayana" is a derogatory term applied by the Mahayana side, meaning "lesser vehicle" although I was taught it w ...[text shortened]... version, because it didn't deify the Buddha so much. So you can see how far I have to go.
    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/dhp/dhp.intro.budd.html
  5. Joined
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    26 Mar '12 16:34
    Originally posted by mikelom
    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/dhp/dhp.intro.budd.html
    Thanks.

    I have a question for you or others familiar with this.

    I went from that link to

    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/dhp/dhp.01.budd.html

    which appears to be the The Dhammapada.

    (incidentally, this version seems to have typos)

    I quote in part:

    "7. Just as a storm throws down a weak tree, so does Mara overpower the man who lives for the pursuit of pleasures, who is uncontrolled in his senses, immoderate in eating, indolent, and dissipated. [1]"

    The footnote [1] is:

    "(v. 7) Mara: the Tempter in Buddhism, represented in the scriptures as an evil-minded deity who tries to lead people from the path to liberation. The commentaries explain Mara as the lord of evil forces, as mental defilements and as death."

    I don't want to dwell on this, it's just curiosity about the usual beliefs of followers: Is Mara believed to be an existent deity, an actual supernatural person, or is "Mara" recognized as a literary device, a personification? Is there an orthodoxy on such interpretations? In any case, I will recognize it as those aspects of existence; those temptations that are commonly personified in this way.
  6. Donationbuckky
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    27 Mar '12 00:18
    Originally posted by RJHinds
    You are just wasting your time with this Buddha stuff. Worship God and Him only. 😏
    HalleluYah !!!
    What a sick reply. The arrogant Christian is not a pretty picture . You only hurt your cause .
  7. Standard memberblack beetle
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    27 Mar '12 05:17
    Originally posted by JS357
    Can anyone recommend a good unbiased resource, for getting a start on understanding them? When I was a kid I was taught that the former deified the Buddha or glorified him as a transcendent being and the latter, (called Hinayana) didn't. Apparently "Hinayana" is a derogatory term applied by the Mahayana side, meaning "lesser vehicle" although I was taught it w ...[text shortened]... version, because it didn't deify the Buddha so much. So you can see how far I have to go.
    Methinks Hinayana is not a derogatory term; and unbiased resources are a rare bird, so I can only show my 2 cents. Then I can give you bibliography as regards the topics they seem interesting to you.

    All Buddhist traditions are focused on a single task: to help the individual give an end to suffering and achieve buddhahood. How? By means of analyzing reality properly, leaving metaphysics aside and using concrete logic.

    When the Mahayana philosophers state that the phenomenal world is an illusion, they do not mean that we imagine non-existent subjects, objects and phenomena; they mean that whatever we perceive as “an objective subject that exists on its own being separated from everything else” is the result of a non accurate evaluation of the reality.
    The phrase “Nirvana is bliss”, means not that when somebody achieves nirvana he will envelop an immovable, stable stature and a heart full of peace and joy. “Nirvana is bliss” means that the individual, who understands the nature of the absolute reality, knows that “the Floating World is triggered into being by thought”.
    The phrase “Conceive the nature of the Dharmas and become a Buddha” does not mean that the individual has to understand the teachings of Gautama Buddha in order to become “pure and overcome suffering”. This state is merely a prerequisite; the meaning of the phrase is that the individual has to see on his own that the nature of the Dharmas is empty. Etc etc.

    According to the Mahayanists, the inability to proceed this way is the agent that leads the practitioners of Theravada to go deeper. Liberation (of suffering, illusion, attachment etc etc) is dual: liberation from ego and liberation from the Dharmas. Since there are many levels of understanding, Buddha teached the doctrine of no-self at the level of the absolute reality although ego exists at the level of the Floating World. The Elder Brothers (the Theravada practitioners) analyze the doctrine of no-self solely at the level of the Floating World, so they fail to see that this approach is used in order to help the individual break free from samsara.
    Furthermore, Theravada holds that Dharmas are real whilst Mahayana holds that they are empty (Chico Komatsu, The Way Of Piece: The Life and Teachings of Buddha, Hokozun Publishing Co, Tokyo 1984). Theravada holds that nirvana (cessation of all thoughts during constant cultivation of morality, as for example is pointed out by Paravahera Vajiranana Mahathera at Buddhist Meditation in Theory and Practice, Buddhist Missionary Society 1975) is inexplicable and, as such, one has to feel it in order to get to know it. However, Mahayana holds that nirvana is not “cessation” but a direct grasp of the absolute reality.

    Every Buddhist accepts that there are as many realities as (many are the) sentient beings (that perceive them). The different approaches gave rise to the main Buddhist schools during three phases: Hinayana presentation (it presents the fundamental teaching and practices that form the essential basis for the practice of all the techniques and methods that lead to the path to enlightenment; from the 18 Hinayana schools, the remaining version is Theravada), Mind-Only presentation (Yogacara-Chittamatra) and The Middle Way presentation (Madhyamaka, divided into Svatantrika: the Autonomy School that employs arguments involving the provisional attribution of substantiality, and Prasangika: the Consequence School that employs reductio ad absurdum arguments and thus avoiding all attributions to substantiality).

    To better understand Theravada and Mahayana and their differences, first consider Bodhi (Ultimate Reality, or Mind, or Buddha Nature/ singularity, not manifested ground of Reality) and Dharma (Tao/ The Way/ collapsing of the wavefunction, phenomena). Bodhi and Dharma together is just the Propensity of the Mind.

    According to specific Mahayana (Madhyamaka, Yogacara-Chittamatra, Zen) traditions, Bodhi is not an extraneous transcendental concept but an immanent reality, therefore self and the mundane world have all the qualities of transcendence (only our conditioning/ our modification of the mind make us believe that this –Floating– World and the Self are mundane). Since the Bodhi is immanent and the Self sublime, there cannot be Manifestation and Dissolution, because all is Bodhi. Therefore, the practitioners of those traditions conceive nirvana not the same way as the Elder Brothers. Since they dismiss the concept of a transcendental Bodhi that causes the notion of Creation and Dissolution, the Madhyamikas and the Zennists accept that the immanent Bodhi Reality in its mundane state ideates this world of experience or Reality.
    In contrast, the Elder Brothers hold the belief that the Cosmic Breath gave the initial stir within the Cosmic Absolute, after the occurrence of Primordial thought or Logos, to propel Genesis. But according to the Ch’an (Zen) tradition, the Primordial Prana (Cosmic Breath/ Wind) does not emanate; the so called “emanation” that the people use to believe (as inherently existent), occurs due to an experience of the conditioned (karmic) mind. Since all there ever was and will be is just Bodhi, the Zennists focus their point of attention on BodhiDharma. In fact, according to all Buddhist schools, the Cosmic Breath triggers "Creation" occuring in the Void (Sunya/ Sunyata). So, since Bodhi is an immanent reality, this Manifestation does not unfurl but occurs. Therefore, we do not manifest but we merely exist in the Bodhi realm, whilst our karmic conditioning makes us believe that we are in a manifested mundane world. This is the reason why the Zen transmission is just this: “A special transmission outside the scriptures, not founded upon words and letters; By pointing directly to Mind. It lets one see into nature and attain Buddhahood”. Buddha picked the flower and Kasyapa smiled, that is.

    Theravada has mainly a single soteriological purpose: out of love and compassion, the Elder Brothers wanted to turn the disciple into an arahant.

    Madhyamaka cuts through the Floating World and, by means of constant negations, demonstrates that all phenomena are just a (quantum) karmic (Quantum Cause-Effect ) product and that thus they are empty (of inherent existence). Therefore, it holds that asserting the existence or non-existence of any ultimately real thing is inappropriate.

    Zen builds fully on the Madhyamaka, aiming to turn the disciple towards BodhiDharma. Yogacara finally accepted that the Madyamaka is accurate.

    Vajrayana (1.Nyingma-pa, 2.Sarma-pa -divided into the Sakya-pa and the Kagyu-pa- and 3.Gelug-pa), is Tibetan and mystic. Nyingma-pa techniques for the attainment of enlightenment include chanting of magical spells, special hand gestures and mystical diagrams. Sakya-pa uses both exoteric and esoteric teachings. Kagyu-pa builds on sutras and tantras. Gelug-pa holds the belief that a Buddha is omnipresent in the Floating World, since out of compassion for the sentient beings he foregone nirvana.

    And Maras? It is just a metaphor used in order to describe processes that obstruct enlightenment (the shifting of the point of one’s attention to the desired focus)
    😵
  8. Account suspended
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    28 Mar '12 08:12
    Originally posted by mikelom
    http://www.accesstoinsight.org/tipitaka/kn/dhp/dhp.intro.budd.html
    looking at this link there are many concepts which are also Biblical, for example

    1. the search for righteousness,
    2. the dangers of demonstrating anger
    3. overcoming hatred with love
    4. the call to be sound in mind
    5. that desire is treacherous
    6. shunning of materialism

    all may be demonstrated Biblically.
  9. Joined
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    28 Mar '12 11:44
    Originally posted by robbie carrobie
    looking at this link there are many concepts which are also Biblical, for example

    1. the search for righteousness,
    2. the dangers of demonstrating anger
    3. overcoming hatred with love
    4. the call to be sound in mind
    5. that desire is treacherous
    6. shunning of materialism

    all may be demonstrated Biblically.
    Here's an interesting source:

    http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/virtualpress/wolfe/word/parallelteachings.pdf

    Example:

    "Smaller than a grain of rice is the Self, smaller than a grain of barley, smaller than a mustard seed...Yet again is that Self within the lotus of my heart, greater than the earth, greater than the heavens, yea, greater than all the worlds" (Chandogya Upanishad).

    "With what can we compare the kingdom of God...It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade" (Mark 4:30-32).

    Reading such passages may reveal as much about our subjective relation to the texts, as it does about their objective similarities and differences.
  10. Joined
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    28 Mar '12 11:47
    Originally posted by black beetle
    Methinks Hinayana is not a derogatory term; and unbiased resources are a rare bird, so I can only show my 2 cents. Then I can give you bibliography as regards the topics they seem interesting to you.

    All Buddhist traditions are focused on a single task: to help the individual give an end to suffering and achieve buddhahood. How? By means of analyzi ...[text shortened]... obstruct enlightenment (the shifting of the point of one’s attention to the desired focus)
    😵
    Thanks, I have copied this off. Some basic references, if not too much trouble, will be appreciated.
  11. Standard memberblack beetle
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    28 Mar '12 15:43
    Originally posted by robbie carrobie
    looking at this link there are many concepts which are also Biblical, for example

    1. the search for righteousness,
    2. the dangers of demonstrating anger
    3. overcoming hatred with love
    4. the call to be sound in mind
    5. that desire is treacherous
    6. shunning of materialism

    all may be demonstrated Biblically.
    Sure thing;

    But, my trusty feer, Theravada’s soteriology emphasize that the process towards the Aim (arahant) is influenced by the fundamental features of the mind, whilst the Christian traditions involve pure metaphysics (Grace etc, and in many occasions neoplatonic concepts). However (as it is also the case with the Christian traditions), methinks it fails to recognize the importance of socio-cultural and historical factors in shaping how different approaches are used and their ever-shifting status within particular cultural contexts and different levels of understanding: even today, the Theravadins insist that only a monk can attain nirvana and all that jazz… I still wait for remarks on the growth of the importance of the means of the soteriological message compared with specific facts and evidence in contemporary society and the associated shifts in the communicative functions of the sutras, but the Elder Brothers seem to me really immovable –oh well, the arahants are supposed to be indeed immovable oh the horror!

    Theravada’s semiotic space remain in a sphere (where the domain in which mind is exercised) that envelops in full aspects of self-transcendence, so their concerns are realistic. Since there is more than one level at which we can identify Theravada’s semiosphere -at the level of the individual, at the level of the Triple Gem etc-, this tradition offers in my opinion a more philosophical and dynamic vision of the means towards the Aim due to the cautious interpretation of its canon (for example, concrete analysis of the Problem, of the Cause, of the Solution and of the Implementation) than the “know-how” of the Christian traditions as regards the specific religious messages that are transmitted by the Bible (Grace and Works etc). Afterall, Theravadins are eager to remove all ideas and all concepts, in order for the “truth” to have a chance to reveal itself (but methinks they fail to see that “truth” is always relative)
    😵
  12. Standard memberblack beetle
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    28 Mar '12 15:46
    Originally posted by JS357
    Thanks, I have copied this off. Some basic references, if not too much trouble, will be appreciated.
    Walpola Rahula’s What The Buddha Taught (Oneworld Publications, Oxford 1974) is excellent as regards the theses of the mainstream Theravadins, along with Paravahera Vajiranana Mahathera’s Buddhist Meditation in Theory and Practice (Buddhist Missionary Society 1975).

    Do you need bibliography about the other Buddhist traditions?
    😵
  13. Joined
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    28 Mar '12 15:55
    Originally posted by black beetle
    Walpola Rahula’s What The Buddha Taught (Oneworld Publications, Oxford 1974) is excellent as regards the theses of the mainstream Theravadins, along with Paravahera Vajiranana Mahathera’s Buddhist Meditation in Theory and Practice (Buddhist Missionary Society 1975).

    Do you need bibliography about the other Buddhist traditions?
    😵
    No, that will do for now. I will see of they are in my local library system, possibly as non-circulating reference materials.
  14. Account suspended
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    28 Mar '12 18:36
    Originally posted by black beetle
    Sure thing;

    But, my trusty feer, Theravada’s soteriology emphasize that the process towards the Aim (arahant) is influenced by the fundamental features of the mind, whilst the Christian traditions involve pure metaphysics (Grace etc, and in many occasions neoplatonic concepts). However (as it is also the case with the Christian traditions), methinks ...[text shortened]... ve a chance to reveal itself (but methinks they fail to see that “truth” is always relative)
    😵
    yes dear beetle the mind and its influence were readily apparent, so to was a pure
    belief, that of reincarnation, for me thinks that the ancients must have looked at the
    world and derived the belief from the cyclical nature of the universe, birth, life,
    death and rebirth. The problem with Christianity and Christians in general is just
    that, its become a tradition and the pure and unadulterated message and example
    of the Christ is obscured because of it, originally dynamic in character, it has
    become a kind of insipid platitude, even in he hands of believers, separated by a
    clergy laity distinction, which was never apparent at its inception, nor intended by its
    founder. I wonder if the Buddha had in mind these distinctions of monk and
    layperson when he formed his ideology for given the number of temples and its
    sphere of influence Buddhism must have been very dynamic at one point in time as
    well, really influencing the social tradition and structures which embraced it. It
    seems to me dear Beetle that we must approach these things as a child, free from
    prejudice and judgement, letting them speak to us without attempting to find
    justification, for why should the private life of the singer influence our appreciation
    of the melody?
  15. Account suspended
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    28 Mar '12 18:37
    Originally posted by JS357
    Here's an interesting source:

    http://www.bsu.edu/libraries/virtualpress/wolfe/word/parallelteachings.pdf

    Example:

    "Smaller than a grain of rice is the Self, smaller than a grain of barley, smaller than a mustard seed...Yet again is that Self within the lotus of my heart, greater than the earth, greater than the heavens, yea, greater than all the world ...[text shortened]... ctive relation to the texts, as it does about their objective similarities and differences.
    yes, one can find justification for even a bad move in chess 🙂
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